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Skyfall officially unveiled as 23rd Bond movie along with new cast

Skyfall launch

Story by Rob Carnevale

IT WAS described as “the worst kept secret in London” by the film’s producer, Michael G Wilson, but the title of the 23rd James Bond movie will be Skyfall.

The name, along with several new cast members, was officially unveiled at a lavish press conference in London, held in the ballroom of the Corinthia Hotel in Whitehall, exactly 50 years to the day that Sean Connery was officially unveiled as the first ever 007 in Dr No.

Producers Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli were joined by incoming director Sam Mendes and key cast members including 007 Daniel Craig, new Bond baddie Javier Bardem, Dame Judi Dench (reprising her role as M) and new Bond ladies Naomie Harris and Bérénice Marlohe.

Although plot details are still being kept as closely guarded a secret as the official secrets act, Skyfall will reportedly find Bond’s loyalty to M tested as her past comes back to haunt her.

As MI6 comes under attack, 007 must track down and destroy the threat, no matter how personal the cost.

Elaborating a little further, Barbara Broccoli said that the film’s title has “emotional context” that will be revealed in the film.

It will be only the second Bond film not to be based on a direct work from Ian Fleming and it will not follow previous Bond adventures Casino Royale and Quantum of Solace in that it will be a film in itself.

Promising a lot of surprises, Mendes, the Oscar-winning director of American Beauty who last worked with Craig on Road To Perdition also said there would be “a lot of action”, thereby scotching early rumours of a more high-brow approach to the franchise.

He also said that in addition to filming a key part of the film in Whitehall – the location for the launch – as well as Pinewood, there would also be a Scottish element to Skyfall and that filming will take place in “the wilds of Scotland” – as well as Shaghai and Istanbul.

Leading man Craig said he couldn’t wait to get started on the new film, which is due to commence on Monday, November 7, with a view to being released just days after the original movie, Dr No, was also unleashed upon the world 50 years ago.

Producer Michael G Wilson said that a number of events were planned to mark the golden anniversary of the world’s most famous spy and paid tribute to the fans who have helped ensure the longevity of the franchise.

“No one really thought that we were going to get to 50 years of Bond, let alone 23 pictures,” he said. “It’s really down to the public, they’re the people, the fans, that keep on supporting us and we’re really delighted.”

View photos from the launch or read more from Sam Mendes